“We Believe Our Little Contribution Will Help Alleviate Some Of Your Plights” - Hayford Attah Krufi
As part of its social and corporate responsibilities in the country, the leadership of the National Pensions Regulatory Authority (NPRA) has commissioned a canteen facility for the staff and patients of the Accra Psychiatric Hospital at Ridge in Accra.
According to its Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Hayford Attah Krufi, he believes his outfit’s little contribution to the Accra Psychiatric Hospital help alleviate some of their plights.
Speaking at the commissioning of the facility, he said “On the 15th of October, last year, Mr. Paul S. M. Koranteng, the then Board Chairman, and Board Members of the NPRA cut the sod for the start of construction of this facility for staff and patients of this hospital. Today, I deem it a great privilege and honor to be here again to participate in the commissioning of this facility for the Accra Psychiatric Hospital, which we as an Authority are proud to have been sponsored”
He added that the NPRA chose to construct the canteen as part of their 10th Anniversary which was held last year.
“Our choice of the Accra Psychiatric Hospital for this project is obvious. The hospital and its operations are so dear to us, as an Authority, furthermore we are neighbors, by way of, proximity. We are all aware that in recent years, the delivery of mental health services in Ghana has expanded substantially, especially since the passing of the Mental Health Act in 2012. This has brought some pressure on facilities in mental health institutions in the country including this very one. This little contribution, we believe, will therefore help alleviate some of your plights”
The CEO also mentioned that he was saddened by the news that a hospital that was established in 1904 did not have a canteen hence the move by the NPRA.
He further explained that the over 700 staff and over 100 visitors had to go outside the walls to find food for themselves, a situation he believed thwarts the smooth progress of work.
“I am particularly happy therefore that I am leading Management of the NPRA to help solve this 117-year-old problem of this hospital. The canteen will serve as a long-lasting solution to the challenges faced by both staff and patients as well as visitors to have easy access to a healthy and nutritious meal daily. The issue of staff going outside the four walls of the hospital for food, I believe, will be a thing of the past”
Mr. Krufi also noted that as Regulators of the pensions industry in the country, with a mission to ensure retirement income security for all Ghanaians, it is their quest to ensure good mental health and wellbeing of the citizenry.
He disclosed that the Authority has been working tirelessly over the last ten years to ensure informal sector workers in Ghana are enrolled in pension schemes to enjoy pension benefits when they grow old.
He mentioned that there have been many successes and some challenges in their efforts to help alleviate poverty.
He congratulated members of the committee and management of the hospital for their hard work and dedication towards this occasion.
The CEO charged all persons involved to continue with the hard work and dedication to ensure the project is completed as scheduled.
Thinknewsonline.com has gathered that out of 333 patients who are currently on admission at the Psychiatric Hospital, 222 have been abandoned by their families.
It is emerging that a patient on admission at the Forensic Ward has been at the hospital for over 45 years.
Reading a speech on behalf of the Hospital Director for Accra Psychiatric Hospital, an Administrator, Julius Kuu Salifu hinted that instead of some family members coming checking up on their relatives on admission, they are rather ready and willing to come for the remains of their beloved should any pass away.
He said, “The courts are not also helping our cause because all the 66 patients currently on admission in the Hospital’s Forensic Ward have vertically been abandoned too. Assuming it cost Gh¢10.00 a day to feed a patient, an amount of Gh¢66,600.00 would be required to feed the abandoned patients monthly. This is too expensive to finance and sustain and we, therefore, urge the Attorney General’s Department to expedite action on these cases to relieve the Hospital and the State of this burden”
“No one is immune to mental health disorders. Indeed, the WHO estimates that mental health disorders constitute about 14% of the global disease burden and around 20% of the world’s children and adolescents have Mental Health conditions”.
Mr. Salifu also explained that stigma and discrimination can make mental health problems worse and stop a person from getting the needed help.
Honorable Minister for Employment and Labour Relations, Ignatius Baffour Awuah commended the leadership of NPRA for their kind gesture.
He tasked the Authorities at the Accra Psychiatric Hospital to take good care of the canteen.
Executive Officer of the Mental Health Authority, Professor Kwasi Osei thanked the leadership of NPRA for thinking about the hospital.
He added that he is confident staff and visitors will make good use of the canteen.
Below are some pictures:
Story by: Joshua Kwabena Smith